Posts

August 17, 2014

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10:16 PM | Where did Ebola come from? Rooting the un-rootable
As with other emerging viruses, the manner in which Ebolavirus outbreaks appear seemingly from nowhere merely adds to their terror. What is especially intriguing about the current outbreak in West Africa is that it's the wrong virus in the wrong place: as a strain of Zaire Ebolavirus, we would expect to see this virus in central Africa. The modern way to answer the 'where did it come from' question is to compare the genomic sequences of different viruses, and this was one of the first things […]

Dudas G & Rambaut A (2014). Phylogenetic Analysis of Guinea 2014 EBOV Ebolavirus Outbreak., PLoS currents, 6 PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24860690

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7:24 PM | Don’t eat dog poop, and don’t run around with sharp objects in your ear
Oh, the Brits. Their science-based food safety agency won’t say, use a thermometer, but a local council tells kids not to eat dog poop. Upon seeing this image, you tell yourself that this park can’t possibly be warning kids not … Continue reading →
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4:00 PM | TWiV 298: MV-NIS de myelo
On episode #298 of the science show This Week in Virology, the TWiV gang answers follow-up questions about the Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa, then discuss treatment of  disseminated multiple myeloma with oncolytic measles virus. You can find TWiV #298 at www.twiv.tv.
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1:04 PM | Mackay On Ebola, Pigs, Primates and People
  Credit CDC PHIL     # 8964   Yesterday Dr. Ian Mackay et al. produced a terrific overview called Ebola virus may be spread by droplets, but not by an airborne route: what that means which I blogged about here.     Today Ian is back with another in-depth look at Ebola transmission, this time taking on the much-discussed laboratory experiments that some online pundits have claimed `proves’ airborne transmission.   Ian quite […]
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12:02 PM | UK: Updated Pandemic Response Plan & Exercise Cygnus
Credit ECDC – 125 years of  Pandemic  History   # 8963   Although it is not often front and center in the news, or in the daily threats messaging from most governments, an influenza pandemic is considered among the most likely high-impact global threats that we could face in the foreseeable future.    Earlier this year, in Influenza Pandemic As A National Security Threat,  we looked at a threats assessment by the Director Of National […]
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10:47 AM | Creatures on hop
Three years ago I planted a hop from seed mainly in the hope of attracting more wildlife to the garden. It seems to have worked as I have certainly never seen this caterpillar before. It’s the larva of the Comma butterfly, confirmed by the internet and my guide book as commonly …
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3:24 AM | Better hygiene through humiliation?
I’ve always been a fan of shame and blame, humility and hubris, carrots and sticks. People can be complicated. According to The Atlantic, a number of companies have designed systems that aim to nudge doctors and nurses into washing their … Continue reading →

August 16, 2014

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2:21 PM | 30 Inspirational Sayings about Life, Fear and Failure
30 Inspirational Sayings about Life, Fear and Failure To be truly alive, we need two capabilities: To swim against the tide and to float downstream. – Zen Buddhist Saying An intelligent person understands others, A brilliant person understands himself….The post 30 Inspirational Sayings about Life, Fear and Failure appeared first on Just Science.
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2:21 PM | Success Has No Age Limit [Infographic]
Do you think your age supports you or is against you? Are you too old (or too young) to reach your dreams? What’s the right age to  change the course of your life? Many times we can get hypnotized by the hollywood image of success;…The post Success Has No Age Limit [Infographic] appeared first on Just Science.
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2:20 PM | What To Do When Your Dog Gets Stung
What To Do When Your Dog Gets Stung   Minor Swelling Is Normal Stings are fairly common for dogs; most of the time it can be relieved by quickly removing the stinger and using some cold compresses for a few hours. As with humans some dogs are severely…The post What To Do When Your Dog Gets Stung appeared first on Just Science.
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2:19 PM | Climate Change Threatens California
The Golden State faces an onslaught from Mother Nature. Two California residents console each other in the aftermath of the Eiler fire on August 5, 2014, in Hat Creek, California. Lack of water has led to more and larger wildfires in the state. SACRAMENTO,…The post Climate Change Threatens California appeared first on Just Science.
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1:05 PM | VDU Blog: Droplets vs Airborne - Demystifying Ebola Transmission
Except from CDC Infographic     # 8962   Almost two weeks ago the CDC released a reassuring infographic (see above) that - among other things - stated that `You can’t get Ebola through Air’, which immediately set off an internet firestorm of disbelief and derision. I considered it a communications misstep at the time, and blogged about it in The Ebola Sound Bite & The Fury.   While I understand the need to reassure the public, and the desire to […]
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11:47 AM | Reminder: September Is National Preparedness Month
  # 8961   After a truly horrendous 2011 – a year that saw a record breaking 14 Billion-dollar-plus weather related disasters (see Weathering Heights: A Year For The Record Books) – we’ve experienced a welcome downturn in the number of major natural disasters in this country.    Credit FEMA as of 8/16/14   With several years of lower-than-normal hurricane activity, a dramatic drop in deadly tornadoes since 2011, and no major seismic […]
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6:24 AM | Holding auditors blameless
The N.Y. Times writes an editorial about financial auditing, but use imagination and substitute food safety audit. Matthew Goldstein of The Times reported this week that an arbitration panel of three former judges has found no basis for a malpractice … Continue reading →
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5:24 AM | I’ve been everywhere: Norovirus transmission between hands, gloves, utensils, and fresh produce during simulated food handling
Human noroviruses (HuNoVs), a leading cause of food-borne gastroenteritis worldwide, are easily transferred via ready-to-eat (RTE) foods, often prepared by infected food handlers. In this study, the transmission of HuNoV and murine norovirus (MuNoV) from virus-contaminated hands to latex gloves … Continue reading →
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5:07 AM | Handwashing is never enough: Minnesota paper says require handwashing stations at petting zoos
I was talking to my friend John this morning at my church – the ice arena – while the women were skating. We talked about getting out of the rat race, and how it was nice we had wives to … Continue reading →
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3:55 AM | Is it an egg problem? 156 sick: UK investigating national outbreak of Salmonella
Public Health England (PHE) is investigating a national outbreak of a type of Salmonella Enteritidis which has affected 156 people. To date, 55 cases have seen in Hampshire, 25 in London, 33 in Cheshire and Merseyside, and 43 in the … Continue reading →
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3:48 AM | Irony can be ironic: 47 resident doctors suffer food poisoning at hospital in India
About 47 resident doctors were admitted at the Sion hospital after they complained of vomit and diarrhea. Authorities suspect sweets distributed at the hospital’s canteen to be a cause. The doctors started fealing uneasy after 12.00 noon on Friday post … Continue reading →
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3:44 AM | UK row as horsemeat file shelved
The official report into the causes of the horsemeat scandal has been shelved until at least the autumn, prompting criticism that the government is not doing enough on food safety. The inquiry by Chris Elliott, professor of food safety at … Continue reading →
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3:40 AM | Metwurst recalled in Australia for E. coli
No information on which E. coli strain or other pertinent facts, but that’s usual for Australian government. Kalleske Meats has recalled Garlic Metwurst, sold at Crystal Brook and Cleve rural agriculture and produce shows on  Saturday 9th Aug and Thursday … Continue reading →
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3:26 AM | UK restaurant closed after dead rat found
Rat carcasses, droppings, flies and contaminated food were just some of the problems food safety officers found when they carried out surprise inspections of food businesses in Ealing. Coco Noodle Bar, on Ealing Broadway, was forced to close for a … Continue reading →
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3:16 AM | Gateway Pizza in Florida closed for final time
For the past year, there have been problems and repeat health code violations inside Gateway Pizza and Pasta Company. The restaurant is located in St. Petersburg on 94th Ave North, just south of Gandy Blvd. 10 Investigates has taken you … Continue reading →

August 15, 2014

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7:59 PM | AAAS and SnapChat collaborate to develop SnapScience to publish scientific papers transiently
Just got this in an email and thought it should be shared.Washington, DC. August 15, 2014.Kent Anderson, the newly appointed Publisher of AAAS (see http://www.aaas.org/news/aaas-names-new-science-publisher) has announced his first action as Publisher - a partnership between AAAS and Snapchat (https://www.snapchat.com).Anderson said "Although I will not officially assume the role of Science publisher until 3 November, this was too important a task to not carry out immediately. AAAS has always […]
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5:01 PM | WHO Ebola Update – August 15th
# 8960   Ebola virus disease update - west Africa Disease outbreak news 15 August 2014 Epidemiology and surveillance Between 12 and 13 August 2014, a total of 152 new cases of Ebola virus disease (laboratory-confirmed, probable, and suspect cases) as well as 76 deaths were reported from Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone. Health sector response On 13-14 August, some airlines and social media and traditional media vehicles expressed concern that air […]
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4:50 PM | CDC H5N1 Incident & Lab Safety Progress Reports
Transferring H7N9 Into Vials – Credit CDC   # 8959   In the wake of two serious lapses in biosecurity at CDC labs involving both anthrax and H5N1 avian flu CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden  promised a complete review of their safety procedures. One of his first actions was to halt the transfer of highly infectious agents from high containment labs until a safety review could be conducted.   In late July, the CDC issued a Statement On Formation Of An […]
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4:32 PM | An Eye-Popping New Look at Flowers’ Highly Public Private Parts
People without the gardening bug often regard flowers like fashion models: pretty but boring. Jens Petersen, the man who gave us the groundbreaking photographs of fungi in “The Kingdom of... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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4:18 PM | Questioning use of HDACi against HIV
Greetings,Fig 1: Rhomidepsin.Source: Wikipedia     Recently the Mississippi baby, had cast doubts on potential long-term cure for HIV (Link). The findings has impacted HIV research. Retrovirology research, there still is a long path to be covered. There seems to be more negative news on the ground. Several new approaches are currently evaluated, for potential therapeutic effect (Link). One among the approach, that was considered as potential intervention is the use of HDAC […]
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3:12 PM | WHO Warns Of `Unrealistic Expectations’ Over Experimental Ebola Drugs
    # 8958     Yesterday, the World Health Organization released a statement updating the Ebola situation, and warning that `Staff at the outbreak sites see evidence that the numbers of reported cases and deaths vastly underestimate the magnitude of the outbreak.’   Today, the WHO has emailed out another news statement, warning of `unrealistic expectations’ regarding the availability, effectiveness, and impact of  experimental vaccines […]
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2:56 PM | EID Journal: Three Decades Of MERS-CoV Antibodies In Camels
Credit FAO     # 8957     Although it certainly seems longer, it has been just over a year since we saw the first real evidence linking camels to the MERS-CoV virus (see Lancet: Camels Found With Antibodies To MERS-CoV-Like Virus).  Since then, as testing procedures have matured and been deployed, we’ve seen a steady stream of studies showing that many Middle Eastern dromedaries either carry the live virus, or antibodies indicating prior infection. […]
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2:01 PM | Today's YAMMM (Yet Another Mostly Male Meeting) Brought to You by CIFAR & NAS
Well, just got an invite to this meeting: Symbioses becoming permanent: The origins and evolutionary trajectories of organelles.  The topic seems of direct interest to what I work on.  And, it is relatively close (Irvine is a short hop away).  So this could be a way to go to a meeting without having to travel too far.  And maybe I could see my younger brother Matt who lives in LA and just graduated from UC Irvine's Masters program in Sound Engineering. Then I looked at […]
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